The introduction of devolution in 2010 constitution was meant to cure skewed development in the country. Development of a region was majorly based on tribalism or the closeness with the first family. After promulgation of the new constitution atleast a spot of light was seen in darkness. A good number of counties have taken the mantle to spearhead development in the right direction. Counties like Kakamega, Kitui, Makueni, Turkana, Uasin Gishu and NEP counties have seen improvement in both physical and economic status by employing cronies.
The jubilee administration led by President Uhuru Kenyatta from the onset, have given governors rough time to run their counties. Funds are not released on time to give the county CEOs enough time to plan for essential services to wanainchi. The worst hit is the ministry of health where the national government is still holding on the roles like procuring of medicine and hospital equipment on behalf of counties. Some counties are given machines when they don’t have the infrastructure to install them.
Nairobi county has a unique case from the beginning of jubilees second term. Mike Sonko was viewed as a lame duck, who will simply be controlled by hid deputy Polycarp Igathe. The objective was not achieved as sonko maintained his duties and even moved to machakos when things were not rosy.
When did the National government start providing essential services to Nairobians?
Since independence Nairobi had remained a dirtiest city in the world thanks to the late former environment minister John Michuki who atleast tried to give it a face. The government since independence has done little in all sectors to revamp the city. President Jomo Kenyatta failed to do it, same to Moi and Kibaki. How sure are we that Uhuru administration will deliver in the next three years?
Vital facilities like Pumwani maternity hospital was left unattended to since it was constructed in 1926. The Hospital was founded in 1926 by a Charitable Organization called Lady Grigg Welfare League and was named Lady Grigg Maternity. In 1928 the first permanent building was put up at the Hospital and later some extensions were made later before independence. All this years the hospital has been unbearable until sonko took over the city.
Just a reminder, Nairobi city (though I feel ashamed to call it a city) had only two fire stations one at Tom mboya street build in 1907 and another in industrial area build in 1957. All constructed before our current president was born. The previous three governments plus kidero administration could not see the need of adding more modernized stations. The current governor though weak academically and morally has added two modern stations within a period of two years.
The kibaki administration tried to build houses under the late Minister Soita Shitanda but not enough for the skyrocketing city population. Sonko had a plan to demolish houses at kaloleni and Makongeni for a start to raise up better housing facilities. The current buildings in the said areas, shauri moyo included were constructed in 1937 two years after World War 1.
What has the Nairobi Regeneration committee done since the president installed them?
The team is led by Nzoika waita. He is the person in charge of the Nairobi Regeneration committee; a task force set up to reclaim the city’s lost glory. It is this team that has firmly supervised the demolition of key installations within the metropolitan. But so far we haven’t seen anything alluded to their success.
Make a turn to sports facilities and moreso stadiums. The city stadium built in 1960s has given the city a very bad picture with no sign of revamping the stands. Nyayo stadium was constructed from 1978 while Kasarani in 1980s. About 40 years in our life time still having the facilities in that state. The Nairobi governor has atleast come up Dandora stadium with the corruption allegations notwithstanding, it’s something that puts a smile to most eastland residents.
Devolution is something we as Kenyans ought to hold it with both hands as we look for a way solving the challenges accrued from the same. Mike sonko handing over the city to National government is an insult not only to Nairobi residents but also to all Kenyans who believe in devolution.
Anyway let’s examine the President Uhuru administration basing on the city development as we give him benefit of doubt hoping that all will not be same like Kibaki, Moi and Jomo Kenyatta administrations.